Page 2 - Physical Look - Outside
As a new product, the exterior design of the SilverStone SFX SX500-G 500W does not surprise me at all. It looks like my favorite food, which is tofu. I really do not think there is any point to use different shapes other than a cuboid for power supply unit design. Therefore, the challenge of designing a good looking power supply unit is really about how to place things like the power plug, switch, grille, ventilation holes, output sockets, and even stickers. As an SFX power supply unit, the aforementioned components have to be placed more carefully due to the small size. When comes to measurements, this product is 10.0cm in length, 12.5cm in width, and 6.35cm in height. It is a small power supply unit for sure. At least it is the smallest 500W power supply unit I have ever seen. With the 500W maximum power output, the SX500-G has power-to-volume-ratio 633W per liter. The engineering involved behind this number is quite impressive.
The above photo shows three sides of the SilverStone SFX SX500-G 500W; namely the top side, back side, and the left side. On the top, there is SilverStone's company logo stamped on the panel. The bottom of the power supply unit is not shown in the photo, but that does not mean there is nothing worth showing. In fact, a circular grille can be found at the bottom of the SX500-G, and a 92mm cooling fan is attached behind the grille. The details of the cooling fan will be investigated later.
Now, let us move on to the front of the power supply unit. In the photo, we can see the power input and switch. The power input plug is standard, therefore the user can just reuse a power cord from other equipment if necessary. The rest of the front side panel features a honeycomb grille for cooling. Cool air can be pumped into the power supply unit from the grille at the bottom. After cooling down the internal components, hot air can then be discharged through the honeycomb grille. To install the power supply unit in a computer case, there are six screw holes at the front of the SX500-G. As mentioned before, this product has an SFX form factor, therefore if the user wants to screw it in an ATX case, an adapter plate needs to be used.
The SilverStone SFX SX500-G 500W is a fully modular power supply unit. The good thing is only the cables that need to be used will be connected, and thus the computer case will have a cleaner internal look. However, the downside is users have to connect all the cables themselves. It is worth noting the ATX 24-pin connector needs to be used in almost all desktop computers. Overall, I think it is a good thing to have a fully modular power supply unit, since cable kits can be swapped.
The back of the power supply unit is the connection panel. The two-row pattern seems to be standard. On the top row, from left to right, we have a Vsense 4-pin socket, ATX/EPS 4+4 pin output, two PCI Express outputs in blue, and one peripheral output. On the bottom row, there is one ATX 24-pin connection and two peripheral outputs. If you are not building a mining rig, the number of plugs on the SX500-G is more than enough. Thanks to the good design of the sockets, it is not possible to plug cables into the wrong connectors. For example, the user cannot plug the ATX/EPS 4+4 pin to the PCI Express output, even though they look similar in terms of pin layout. Before taking the above photo, I went ahead to remove the warranty sticker, since I needed to look at the internal components. Therefore in this photo, you cannot see the warranty sticker on top of the right side screw. Do not remove it, as this will surely waive your warranty.
The SilverStone SFX SX500-G 500W features pretty good build quality. The surface of the power supply unit is pleasant to touch, and it is not likely to leave any fingerprints on it. The gaps between panel connections are small and even. Most importantly, there are no sharp edges around the product. The external build quality boosts my confidence, and hopefully this product will also have good internal build quality.
The voltage specification label for the SilverStone SFX SX500-G 500W can be found on the side panel. There are two main virtual rails. Up to 22A can be delivered via the +3.3V rail for a total of 72.6W. The +5V rail can also deliver 22A, which is 110W. The total combined output for the +3.3V and +5V rail is 110W. In other words, your power allocation combination must fall within the limits of the listed specifications. Meanwhile, a single powerful +12V rail delivers up to 41.7A (500W) to reduce operating overhead compared to multiple +12V rails. Overall, the combined power output for the whole SX500-G is 500W. Again, your power distribution in your system must fall within the limits provided -- it must not exceed 72.6W on the +3.3V rail, 110W on the +5V rail and 110W combined for both, 500W on the +12V rail, and 500W combined between all the positive rails. Normally, users will not need to worry about those configurations, since most of the use cases have already been considered by the engineers of SilverStone. Generally speaking, the power distribution of this product is fairly reasonable for a 500W power supply unit.
The SilverStone SFX SX500-G 500W is 80 Plus Gold certified, which means it is certified to be at least 87%, 90%, 87% efficient at 20%, 50%, and 100% load, respectively. There are also higher certifications such as the 80 Plus Platinum and 80 Plus Titanium, while I personally think the 80 Plus Gold is good enough for most users.
Out of box, we have seven modular cables, one adapter, and one power cable coming with the SilverStone SFX SX500-G 500W. The modular cables are generally easy to bend. The flat cables are flexible enough to allow easy cable management in a desktop computer. As for currents handling, these wires range from 18 to 22AWG, which are high enough for most of the computer applications.
The following modular cables are included out of the box:
- 1x ATX 20+4pin, 30.0cm
- 1x ATX/EPS 4+4 pin, 40.0cm
- 1x PCIe 6+2 pin, 2 connectors, 40.0cm to first connector, 15.0cm spacing thereafter
- 1x PCIe 6+2 pin, 2 connectors, 55.0cm to first connector, 15.0cm spacing thereafter
- 2x SATA, 3 connectors each, 30.0cm to first connector, 22.0cm to the second connector, 10.0cm spacing thereafter
- 1x Molex, 3 connectors, 30.0cm to first connector, 20.0cm spacing thereafter
- 1x Molex to Floppy adapter, 10.0cm
These measurements are pulled from the manufacturer's website. As you can see, those are not long cables. As a power supply unit in the SFX form factor, providing long cables is not necessary. In fact, for smaller computer cases, such as the ITX and micro ATX cases, it is better to have just long enough cables in order to avoid trouble in cable management. For PCI Express cables, the 15cm spacing between connectors is a little bit too long in my opinion. In terms of color, all the cables are black. If you are not satisfied with the length and the color of the cables, a different cable kit can be your solution.
1. Introduction, Packaging, Specifications
2. Physical Look - Outside
3. Physical Look - Inside
4. Minor Tests and Conclusion